11 Most Dumbest Animals on the Planet, and Why!

Here we’re going through the top 11 dumbest animals in the world. With a surprising bonus animal at the end.

See if you can guess any animals on this list before you go through it.

We love all animals here on Ranger Planet, but while they might have brains and are smart enough to know better, some just do their best to achieve the darwin award for being the dumbest animals around.

That’s up to them of course, but you have to wonder why. Here are the 11 most stupid animals in the world – and why! A lighthearted look at some “not so great” animal abilities!

Dumbest animals on the planet

So in reverse order, let’s begin…

11 Jerboa

The Jerboa (Allactaga tetradactyla) is located in Asia and North Africa, and it has really poor energy efficiency, they jump all over the place randomly.

The unpredictable jumping does help keep predators guessing their next move. But does little to help them run away or hide, or offer much sense of direction!

dumbest animals - picture of a four toas jaboa
jerboa – image source

10. Squirrel

Most people love the cute cuddly squirrel (Sciuridae) and we’ve written a lot about them here on Ranger Planet.

And when winter approaches, squirrels characteristically begin stockpiling acorns. Hiding them, and burying them in all kinds of places to save for winter.

And their memory is pretty good, but many of the nuts they bury are never found because they do not remember where they buried all of them. Which seems a waste after all the effort they went to!

Grey squirrels are slightly better than reed squirrels at remembering where they buried food, but not by much.

squirrel eating

9. Cane Toad

The cane toad (Rhinella marina)is native to Australia.

Male cane toads are known to attempt mating with anything they can get their hands on, alive or dead! That’s right, mice, snakes, or dead female toads run over by cars …it’s all fair game to a cane toad!

toad mating
cane toad

8. Goblin shark

Mostly found off the southern coast of Australia, the goblin shark (Mitsukurina owstoni) could be considered as just a poor version of most other sharks that have evolved to be top-level predators.

Not only can they not swim that well, they can’t see very well and they’re relatively flabby, but have a long snout that is sensitive when prey nearly touch it, but otherwise serves little purpose.

The worst thing is that they have a jaw designed like the one from the “Alien” film. This jaw can protrude out to snatch at prey such as passing fish. But only if they pretty much “bump into” the shark, close enough for it to use its jaws.

illustration of goblin shark
illustration of a goblin shark and how the jaw protrudes forward when attacking

7. Koala

These native Australian animals are pretty cute, but the Koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) has the smallest brain-to-body ratio among animals.

They also had to evolve four stomachs just to digest their one main food source which is eucalyptus leaves. They are pretty lazy and move slowly, sleep much of the time, and almost all are reported to have chlamydia.

Some even have difficulty recognizing what their food is …and starve to death!

koala clinging to a tree trunk
koala bear

Here’s another article we have on whether Koalas are dangerous!

6. Lilac-breasted roller

The national bird of Kenya and looks stunning. But the lilac-breasted roller (Coracias caudatus) nests in precarious places or nesting sites that are easily accessible to predators. It’s even been known to nest on termite mounds.

And it doesn’t attempt to flee even when something comes close, so it’s easy pickings for predators and poachers.

lilac-breasted roller perched on a branch
lilac-breasted roller

5. Flamingo

Flamingos (Phoenicopteridae) are stunning to look at and cute, and popular.

But despite having two legs they mostly make use of just one much of the time.

But also, they catch fish in the water while keeping their beaks upside down. This doesn’t seem to make much sense!

Maybe they’re just trying to be different!

flamingo standing on one foot in water

4. Kakapo

The Kakapo (Strigops habroptilus) also known as the “night parrot” or “Owl parrot”, is native to New Zealand.

When it spots a predator, it becomes suddenly so scared that it will instantly freeze on the spot instead of fleeing.

Their favorite food is a berry that only grows once every four years.

Not only that, but they’re not that good at reproducing.

Their booming call to attract females simply echoes all around, making it very hard for females to find them

So you’ll probably understand why there are only about 150 or so left on the planet. You will struggle to find any images of them.

kakapo parrot
kakapo – image source

3. Giant Panda

Probably the most cutest cuddly bear on the planet. But very stupid!

Pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) are genetically set up to be carnivores, but they live on a plant diet.

Pandas are also probably the most unromantic animals in the world, which is why they’re at great risk of going extinct.

They’re not the best parents either. If an infant panda annoys its mother too much, the mother may just choose to roll on it which kills it.

giant panda
giant panda

2. Turkey

The now domesticated turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) prefers to drink water only when the water is falling downward.

They will just keep staring at the sky endlessly even when it’s raining due to hereditary Tetanic Torticollar Spasms, so they have been known to die in the rain.

Males have a high enough sex drive they have even tried mating with the decapitated head of a female turkey.

wild turkey

1 Sloth

Not only have we featured the sloth (Bradypus tridactylus) in our top 10 slowest animals video.

But these dumb animals spend most of their time sleeping on tree branches, descending once a week to poop on the ground.

Sometimes baby sloths see their own limbs as tree branches while climbing, so they fall, and die.

three toed sloth

Bonus: Human

That’s right, we can hardly call other animals dumb when the internet and YouTube are littered with humans doing some of the most stupid things imaginable.

That surely proves we humans must be the dumbest animal on the planet.

That’s the dumbest animals …and here’s more wildlife help

Well, that’s a lighthearted look at some of the less intelligent aspects of wildlife. But of course, we may call them the dumbest animals, but all wildlife is precious and we write about them all here on Ranger Planet.

Because learning about wildlife encourages a fundamental appreciation of nature and harnesses respect for all the animals we share this place with.

Be sure to check out the following articles to get a flavor of the facts and information about wildlife…

What is Kingdom Animalia, Simple Guide to the Animal Kingdom

Do Insects Take Fall Damage? What Happens to Them? Here’s The Answer

100 Cute Rabbit Names and Their Meaning, Not Just a List!

115 Amazing Facts About Dogs and Puppies, Quick Facts List


A Certified Ecologist and an Entomologist, Michael has been interested in all aspects of Nature for many years. It's only now he's decided, along with his partner Fran, to begin documenting what he knows.

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